BBN Technologies and SAIL LABS Technology Sign Speech Technology Licensing Agreement

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. and VIENNA, Austria - BBN Technologies, a Verizon company, and SAIL LABS Technology AG, of Vienna, Austria, have signed a licensing agreement involving speech and language technology.

The agreement gives SAIL LABS Technology rights to use and modify current and future BBN real-time speech and language technologies for integration into SAIL LABS Technology products. SAIL LABS Technology will now include the latest BBN technologies in its own market-oriented speech technology products.

In addition to technology licensing, the agreement provides a framework for long-term cooperation in research and development.

"The combination of BBN and SAIL LABS's unique strengths and experiences is an extraordinarily powerful package. Our technological innovation and ability to execute product delivery will result in exciting products and solutions," said Christoph Prinz, vice president of R&D at SAIL LABS.

SAIL LABS is a premier European and international supplier of natural language understanding products, such as speech recognition, dialog management, and media indexing.

"We are proud to have BBN as our partner, a company with a long history in world-class speech and language processing," Prinz said.

The association with BBN will provide SAIL LABS with software to bring to market the latest, most advanced research in speech technologies.

Under the agreement, BBN will gain license fees and valuable market feedback that will help provide direction for future research and development. SAIL LABS, which has a strong international focus, will complement BBN's research and development-oriented focus on the U.S. SAIL LABS will also provide BBN with valuable input in the field of European languages, such as Spanish, French, German and Greek.

"The licensing agreement between BBN and Sail Labs is a natural fit as both companies provide complementary speech and language technologies," said Erich Bender, vice president of Speech and Language Processing at BBN. "Our combined technologies will produce advanced products for the marketplace.

"BBN's experience and expertise in speech and language processing extends over 30 years," Bender said, "while SAIL LABS is emerging as one of the premier companies in the field of natural language understanding. We are delighted to be working with a company that shares BBN's dedication to innovation and excellence."

BBN Technologies

BBN Technologies, a Verizon Communications company, was established as Bolt Beranek and Newman Inc. in 1948. From its roots as an acoustical design consulting firm, to the implementation and operation of the ARPANET-the forerunner of today's Internet-to the development of the first network email, which established the @ sign as an icon for the digital age, BBN Technologies provides the same technical expertise and innovation to both government and commercial customers today. These areas of expertise include: system integration; distributed, collaborative applications; speech recognition; language understanding; wireless and satellite networking; network architecture and management; information security; structural acoustics; sensor signal processing; and real-time, multi-processor systems. With more than 750 employees in 15 offices across the U.S., BBN Technologies had revenues in 2000 of approximately $118 million. For more information on BBN Technologies, go to www.bbn.com.

Verizon Communications

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with 128.5 million access line equivalents and 28.7 million wireless customers. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world. A Fortune 10 company with 256,000 employees and approximately $65 billion in annual revenues, Verizon's global presence extends to more than 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.

SAIL LABS Technology

SAIL LABS Technology (from "Speech-Artificial-Intelligence-Language Laboratories") is one of the world's leading innovators in the field of Speech Technology and "Natural Language Understanding." In the company's locations in Europe and the USA speech experts are creating and deploying leading-edge speech technology solutions.SAIL LABS Technology's products address the high-value speech technology markets of spoken dialog systems, media indexing, and media mining. Together with a global network of partners, SAIL LABS provides comprehensive solutions for vertical markets. Continuous innovation at the leading edge of linguistic and IT research drives the SAIL LABS vision of creating technologies that enable spontaneous human-machine interaction.